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Trying to identify possible Kai-gunto

Article about: Thanks in advance for your expertise. This sword was one that hung in the closet of my grandparents house and every year we went there I would ask to get it down and look at it. About 15 yea

  1. #1

    Default Trying to identify possible Kai-gunto

    Thanks in advance for your expertise. This sword was one that hung in the closet of my grandparents house and every year we went there I would ask to get it down and look at it. About 15 years ago after my grandfather passed away my grandmother one year simply gave it to me as a gift. It has been in my gun cabinet for years and I am trying to finally figure out the value and the quality of this sword. The story that I know is that my great uncle was in the navy and brought it home with him after the war. He died before I was born and no one seems to know anything about it.

    Simple quick research that I did after looking at the markings on the tang look similar to one I found of Koa Isshin Mantetsu saku but not knowing any Japanese I'm curious to find out from the experts what the correct translation is.

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    Thanks,

    Matthew

  2. #2
    ?

    Default

    Hello and Welcome,

    That does appear to be an authentic Mantetsu Army officer sword referred to as a Shin-gunto.

    Regards,
    Stu

  3. #3

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    興亜一心 満鉄作
    Koa Isshin Mantetsu saku
    Asia Development [in] One Spirit -- Made of Manchurian Steel

    This smith used the zodiac calendar to date the sword:

    昭和己卯冬
    Shōwa Kibō Fuyu
    Winter, 1939

    If you cut-and-paste 興亜一心 満鉄作 and execute a Google-Search, you'll find other swords with this type of signature.

    --Guy

  4. #4

    Default

    Wow thanks for the quick reply! I did not expect an answer that quick. You guys are awesome.

  5. #5
    MAP
    MAP is offline
    ?

    Default

    Quote by mlawrence View Post
    Wow thanks for the quick reply! I did not expect an answer that quick. You guys are awesome.
    Yes they are!!!
    "Please", Thank You" and proper manners appreciated

    My greatest fear is that one day I will die and my wife will sell my guns for what I told her I paid for them

    "Don't tell me these are investments if you never intend to sell anything" (Quote: Wife)

  6. #6
    ?

    Default

    Now, you have asked about value. Before we start assigning numbers, even ballpark ones, a few questions need to be answered.

    Is the blade straight? Any bends or twists?
    Is the cutting edge intact? Any nail catchers?
    Is the tsuba (hand guard) the open work type? If you are not sure have a look at the photo I have attached. The tsuba is not just one cast plate but rather has cut outs. (Photo credit - Moses Becerra of Nihonto Antiques)

    Regards,
    Stu
    Click image for larger version. 

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  7. #7

    Default

    Hi sorry for the long delay in response.

    There are a couple extremely small nicks in the blade but nothing that you can see from a side view. If I had longer finger nails I'd try. The blade looks very straight and I cannot see any warping or bending in the blade. the tsuba is all one piece with no cut outs and there is one scratch on the habaki (I hope that is the right part, the piece on the blade above the hilt).

  8. #8
    ?

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    Mantetsu blades are strong sellers at this time. Depending on condition, I have seen them sell for between $1500 and $3500 over the past couple of years.


    Tom

  9. #9
    ?

    Default

    A really nice bring back sword and family Heirloom .
    REGARDS AL

    We are the Pilgrims , master, we shall go
    Always a little further : it may be
    Beyond that last blue mountain barred with snow
    Across that angry or that glimmering sea...

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